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Jack Brooke-Battersby
By Jack Brooke-Battersby

Senior Staff Writer

20 May 2019

| | 3 min read

Community

Newcastle sets out on journey to become Dementia Friendly City

Newcastle is embarking on a year-long journey to become a Dementia Friendly City.

A designated space in the Grainger Market where people will be able to learn and talk about dementia
A designated space in the Grainger Market where people will be able to learn and talk about dementia

Newcastle City Council, alongside key local partners and charities, is committed to seeing the city become a place where everyone considers what can be done to increase awareness around dementia.

At the heart of this ambition is the challenge of raising awareness of dementia, tackling misconceptions and negative attitudes about the illness and increasing residents’ knowledge of the condition. It is also focusing on ensuring anyone living with dementia, and their carers, feel welcome throughout the city.

This 12-month campaign began at Newcastle’s historic Grainger Market, which will house a new space to learn and talk about dementia, while there will also be a series of activities, engagement sessions and information sharing opportunities.

Cllr Karen Kilgour, Newcastle City Council cabinet member for health and social care, said: “Alongside our many fantastic partners and charitable organisations, we want this city to be a trendsetter when it comes to dementia.

“We want everyone to be aware that there are people with dementia living around them, going about their daily lives, and how best to interact with them. We want to break down the stigma that surrounds dementia and show it’s not just a condition that affects the elderly.

“Newcastle is already an amazingly welcoming city but there is so much more we can do to make sure people with dementia and those who care for them feel that the city is as accessible to them as it is to anyone else.

“I’m excited to be setting out on this 12-month programme to see what we can do to make improvements that last well beyond this year and make a real to difference to people’s lives.”

Each month will centre around a theme relating to dementia, and activities will be held in the city centre and the different communities around Newcastle to help as many people as possible become dementia aware.

Activities were launched in Dementia Action Week (May 20-24) focusing on inclusion with activities in the Grainger Market. On Tuesday, guests were/will be taking part in armchair exercises to learn how to stay active at home, while on Wednesday group gardening activities are planned to encourage people to work alongside others.

Future months will explore elements such as what help and support is available, how to stay safe, planning ahead and how to optimise the home of someone with dementia.

The full calendar is yet to be finalised so we would like to hear from members of the public what they would like to focus on the in Grainger Market space

For more information on upcoming events visit  https://www.informationnow.org.uk/article/dementia-friendly-newcastle/